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First Amendment

Assistant AG Defends Blog Tirades Against ‘Radical Homosexual’ Student Leader

Posted Sep 29, 2010 10:48 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Screen shot from CNN’s AC 360 interview.

An assistant attorney general in Michigan is asserting his First Amendment right to criticize an openly gay student leader in blog tirades, despite misgivings by his boss.

Appearing on CNN’s AC 360, assistant attorney general Andrew Shirvell said he has a constitutional right to criticize the University of Michigan student he labels a “radical homosexual activist” in his blog.

Shirvell claims on his blog that student assembly president Chris Armstrong tries to recruit new students to “join the homosexual lifestyle” and turned a once-conservative student into a “proponent of the radical homosexual agenda.” According to CNN, Shirvell acknowledged protesting outside of Armstrong's house and calling him "Satan's representative on the student assembly."

“I'm a Christian citizen exercising my First Amendment rights," Shirvell told CNN's Anderson Cooper. "I have no problem with the fact that Chris is a homosexual. I have a problem with the fact that he's advancing a radical homosexual agenda."

Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox has issued a statement saying Shirvell’s opinions don’t reflect the views of the Michigan Attorney General’s office. “His immaturity and lack of judgment outside the office are clear,” the statement said.

The Michigan Daily has called for Shirvell’s ouster, citing his "hateful ignorance."

Previous coverage:

Michigan Daily: “Michigan assistant attorney general a derisive critic of MSA president”

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